A group of Contra Costa County first responders played host to a special visitor to their station in Monday -- a 10-year-old Martinez boy they helped save after he was mauled by a friend’s dog.
Hunter Kilbourn's face was still bandaged Monday but that didn't interfere with his smile as he and his family visited a fire station in Antioch and met the people that were first to the scene after he was mauled by a pit bull while at a friend's house on Aug. 11.
Hunter’s mom Melody Ralls says that her son was walking up the stairs of the Antioch home that afternoon when one of the homeowner's two pit bulls lunged at him, knocked him to the ground and started biting him.
As he lay on the ground, the second pit bull also joined in on the attack, which only stopped after Hunter's friend, who is about the same age, pulled the dogs off of him and was bit on the arm himself, according to Ralls.
“When I ran down, I just saw him laying on the ground,” said Ralls at the time of the accident.
Ralls said her son suffered multiple lacerations to his head, face and arms and had one of his ears partially torn off in the mauling.
After two skin graft surgeries at UC Davis Medical Center, Hunter told KTVU Monday that he was glad to be out of the hospital and thankful for the fact that the first responders he visited were there in the moments after the attack.
"All I know is they're awesome, and they helped me a ton. So they're really good people!" said Hunter.
The crew members told Hunter that what they remembered from the scene was how brave he was through the whole ordeal.
The two groups exchanged gifts during the reunion; Hunter and his family brought the crew a bucket of red licorice, and he received a set of Legos as well as a hat and t-shirt emblazoned with the Contra Costa County Fire Protection district’s logo.
"We go on these calls a lot, and they don't always have happy endings like this,” said Contra Costa County Fire Capt. Eddie Gonzales. “I’m glad to see he's doing well. It’s good for his healing process and ours as well.”
Hunter was back at school Monday, having just started fourth grade at Morello Park Elementary.
But he was only going for half-days until his doctors give him clearance to go all day.
As for the dog that attacked Hunter, Ralls wants the 2-years-old pit bull, reportedly named Jewels, euthanized but its owners were fighting to have it returned to them.
As of Monday, a public hearing on the fate of the dog was set for Sept. 26.
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